As I have been saying, 2009 is a superb year for Beaujolais. Is it the vintage of the century? Who knows and who cares? The point is that the wines are absolutely delicious. They have been arriving for the last few months and more will be arriving soon. Don’t miss them! Here are notes on some recent arrivals. The quality across the range of wines is outstanding and nearly all are Best Buys with prices from $16 to $25. These are wines you can drink now (remember Thanksgiving is not far off and Beaujolais is one of my favorite wines to serve with Thanksgiving turkey). But, you should also lay some away for the future. You’ll be glad you did!
Coudert Pere & Fils Clos de la Roilette
The Clos de la Roilette, in the village of Fleurie, encompasses some 20 acres bordering on the Moulin-a-Vent appellation. The Fleurie appellation was created in the 1920s. The Clos de la Roilette was re-classified from Moulin-a-Vent to Fleurie which infuriated the owner. He vowed to never use the Fleurie appellation and, using a picture of his racehorse Roilette, he created a label and used only the name Clos de la Roilette. The wine was sold to Switzerland, Germany, and England, but was never sold in France. In 1967, the present owner, Fernand Coudert, bought the estate which by then was suffering from neglect. In 1984, Fernand’s son Alain joined him and has been the winemaker since. The Domaine makes three cuvees. Cuvee Christal is lighter and meant to be consumed young. The Clos Cuvee is made to be drunk young or can be held for additional aging. The Cuvee Tardive is made from a selection of old vines and is partially aged in old oak barrels. It is meant to be aged for a longer time in bottle.
Coudert Pere & Fils 2009 Fleurie Clos de la Roilette Dark in color this Fleurie has a gorgeous berry and cassis perfume with a floral nuance. Intensely fruity with cherry and berry flavors, the wine has good backbone and lots of depth. It is delicious now, but will continue to evolve with additional age –- Outstanding. Louis/Dressner Selections LDM Wines, Inc., New York, NY $18 Best Buy
Coudert Pere & Fils 2009 Fleurie Clos de la Roilette Cuvee Tardive This is a great Beaujolais that should age gracefully for many years. Dark in color, the wine has a gorgeous, complex plummy, blackberry perfume with floral, smoky nuances. Rich, round, lush, and flavorful, it has lots of plummy, blackberry fruit accented by a faint spicy, floral complexity. Impeccably balanced, this is simply stunning –- Extraordinary. Louis/Dressner Selections LDM Wines, Inc., New York, NY $25 Best Buy
Domaine du Pavillon de Chavannes 2009 Cote de Brouilly Ambassades
Pavillon de Chavannes was acquired in 1861 by the Jambon-Chanrion family. Today the property is owned by Paul Jambon and consists of 37 acres on Mont Brouilly. The Ambassades cuvee comes from 12 acres of the best parcels. The winemaking here is simple and traditional with an emphasis on retaining fruitiness.
This is a well-structured, very flavorful Beaujolais. Dark in color, it has a stunning perfume of blackberries and cherries with a floral undertone. The flavors are brimming with blackberry, cherry fruit and accented by floral and spice nuances. This wine is delicious now, but should age gracefully for many years –- Outstanding Plus. Vintage 59 Imports LLC Washington, DC. $18.00 Best Buy
Jean-Paul Brun Domaine des Terres Dorees
This domaine is located in Charnay, a village just north of Lyons in Southern Beaujolais. Jean-Paul Brun is the owner and winemaker at this 40-acre family estate. The intent is to make old style Beaujolais using traditional techniques and the use of the grapes indigenous yeasts. The result is intensely fruity Beaujolais with great substance. These 2009s are simply fabulous!
Jean-Paul Brun Domaine des Terres Dorees 2009 Beaujolais L’Ancien Vielles Vignes This wine is dark in color and has a lovely spice-tinged berry perfume. It is intensely fruity and very flavorful with just a hint of spice. Rounded and lush, this is a delicious Beaujolais with early appeal –- Outstanding. Louis/Dressner Selections LDM Wines, Inc., New York, NY $17.00 Best Buy
Jean-Paul Brun Domaine des Terres Dorees 2009 Cote de Brouilly This Cote de Brouilly is dark in color and shows a deep blackberry perfume with just a tinge of earthiness. The wine has great fruit and firm structure underneath. It will require some time in the bottle to round out and patience is required –- Highly Recommended. Louis/Dressner Selections LDM Wines, Inc., New York, NY $18.50
Jean-Paul Brun Domaine des Terres Dorees 2009 Fleurie This Fleurie is dark in color with a gorgeous blackberry, floral perfume. Loaded with supple blackberry fruit, it is rich and rounded with great flavor and balance – Outstanding Plus. Louis/Dressner Selections LDM Wines, Inc,. New York, NY $22.50 Best Buy
Jean-Paul Brun Domaine des Terres Dorees 2009 Morgon This is a terrific Morgon. It is dark in color and has a black cherry, berry perfume. Packed with fruit, the wine has rich berry, cherry fruit with good underlying backbone. Delicious now, this is one to lay away for several years as well –- Outstanding Plus. Louis/Dressner Selections LDM Wines, Inc. New York, N.Y. $18.50 Best Buy
Jean-Paul Brun Domaine des Terres Dorees 2009 Moulin A Vent Wow! This is stunning! The wine is dark in color and has a complex perfume of plum, black cherry, and blackberry with a faint floral, spice undertone. It is rounded and lush with complex, sappy, plummy, blackberry and black cherry flavors with a tinge of spice. Structured and deep with layers of flavors and a long finish, this is a very great Moulin-a-Vent with a long life ahead — Extraordinary. Louis/Dressner Selections LDM Wines, Inc., New York, N.Y. $21.00 Best Buy
Domaine Michel Tete Domaine du Clos du Fief
Very few producers in the cru Beaujolais region bottle their own production. Michel Tete is one that does and, moreover, has been doing this for two generations. Obviously this experience has paid off for every year these are consistently some of the best Beaujolais available. The formal name of the estate is Domaine du Clos du Fief and is made up of some of the best vineyards in Julienas. There are two cuvees of Julienas. One is the Domaine Clos du Feif and is reviewed here. The top cuvee, called Cuvee Prestige, is made from a selection of the oldest vines and is almost always one of the best wines of the vintage. The 2009 will arrive later this year and is one to look for. Recently vineyards were purchased in Beaujolais-Villages from the Chateau de Jullie estate to make the Beaujolais-Villages bottling.
Michel Tete 2009 Beaujolais-Villages Domaine du Clos du Fief Dark in color this Beaujolais-Villages has a stunning perfume of cherries and raspberries with a floral nuance. It has loads of cherry, berry fruit with a floral, spice tinge. Rounded and elegant, it finishes with a nice crispness. This is a terrific young Beaujolais to be enjoyed now –- Outstanding. Louis/Dressner Selections LDM Wines, Inc., New York, NY $16.00 Best Buy
Michael Tete 2009 Julienas Domaine du Clos du Fief This Julienas is gorgeous. It is dark in color with a lovely floral black cherry perfume. Well structured and flavorful, the wine has intense black cherry fruit flavors with a floral spice nuances. Lovely now, but no hurry –- Outstanding Plus. Louis/Dressner Selections LDM Wines, Inc., New York, NY $18.00 Best Buy
In the 1950’s Maison Loron was one of the largest negociants in Beaujolais with ownership of vineyards in many Crus. Today it is owned by the Barbet family. The focal point is Chateau de Fleurie, an 18th century chateau in the center of town, with prime vineyard sites. They also have important holdings in Brouilly, Moulin-a-Vent, and Saint Amour. Recently the wines began to be exported to the U.S. The wines are made by traditional methods to emphasize the fruit.
Barbet 2009 Saint Amour Domaine des Billards As the name implies, Saint Amour can be one of the softest and most elegant of all Cru Beaujolais. This one certainly fits that description. It is so forward, so soft, and so delicious! Dark in color the wine exhibits a stunning cherry, floral tinged perfume. It is packed with cherry, berry fruit and is rounded and lush with great flavors. Irresistible now, this is terrific Beaujolais with style and elegance that is best consumed in its youth –- Outstanding Plus. David Bowler Wine New York, NY $18.00
Barbet 2009 Fleurie Chateau de Fleurie This Fleurie has a deep color and a lovely berry, floral tinged perfume. It has lots of fruit but with a firm structure underneath. Very tasty and delicious now, this wine will benefit from a bit more age –- Outstanding. David Bowler Wine, New York, NY $18.00